Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Nov 26 2013 22:46:20

eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

The eBay boards are lit up with sellers discussing the plight of one of their better known colleagues, one with an impeccable record and feedback ratings. Sellers are concerned that if it could happen to "Charlie," it could happen to them.

An EcommerceBytes reader took the time to describe the events as she understood them after reading threads on the eBay PowerSeller board and elsewhere. Comments and clarifications are welcome in the comments.

eBay's Latest Drama
told by an eBay PowerSeller and EcommerceBytes reader:


Friday morning at 4:00 am a large Powerseller - arguably the largest PowerSeller on (the eBay PowerSeller board), was taking advantage of the recent Listing Special to list some items, and he noticed that right before his eyes, his listings started disappearing. He watched until they were all gone. First he started a thread on the PS Board, then he called Customer Support. At that time of the morning only CS reps in the Philippines are available, and for the most part they were clueless. Later he proceeded to work his way up through a series of higher and higher ranked Customer Support Reps in the USA.

Ultimately he returned to the boards and reported that he had been indefinitely (read: permanently) suspended. And that the reps believed the reasons were 1 or more of the following:

1. He had received a VeRO notice back on Oct 31 (which wasn't actually a VeRO violation.) Rather it was a complaint from a Company, which was unhappy that he was selling their product below their MAP. Charlie is not a dealer for this company, nor has he signed any contract with this company, and had obtained the product by legal means. He called the company, discussed the problem, resolved the problem. And he thought that he had handled it like a good businessman would, and that was the end of it. He relisted the product, and did not receive any additional VeRO notices.

The eBay Rep informed him that he should have filed a "counter-notice" with the company, so that there was a record on eBay that he had handled and/or solved the problem. It appeared to them that he had ignored the VeRO notice.

2. On Oct 24 he received a take-down notice for two items, because in the title he had used the words "Oil Slick." It turns out that there is a VeRO member who owns the rights to the words "Oil Slick." And even though Charlie's product was completely different ... in a completely different category, from the products THAT company sells, they filed a VeRO complaint against him. (If I remember correctly he ignored the VeRO complaint, believing it to be a mistake.)

3. Sometime recently Charlie received a complaint from a Buyer that the item he sent him was counterfeit. The item was cigarette rolling papers. No one on the board can imagine why anyone would think that rolling papers could be counterfeit. But it is a common ploy used by Buyers to get a refund or partial refund. Charlie informed the Buyer that the item was not counterfeit, and that he could return it for a refund, if he wanted to. Shortly after that the Buyer was NARU'd from eBay, and Charlie supposed the Buyer had tried his tricks one too many times, and eBay had dealt with him.

4. One CS rep told him that the reason for the suspension might have been that he had 56 cases opened against him. He has 46900 Feedback, 7700 in the past 365 days, and 734 in the past month. He's been a member since Feb-23-99. And supposedly Cases are only Discussions now, and don't count against Sellers. However we always have to wonder if maybe eBay has included "Cases" in Guardrail, or another "sooper sekrit" formula.

Upon realizing that these were probably the reasons responsible for his suspension, and that they all seemed to be based on faulty information, he asked the CS rep to file an appeal. He was told that that would take 3 days.

So by this point the Thread on the PSB is growing very quickly. Everyone knows Charlie, and wants to know what's going on. The PS are going to their Facebook Groups and eBay Groups and spreading the word. Everyone is freaking out, because they are realizing that if this could happen to a seller like Charlie, it could happen to anyone.

Charlie still wasn't particularly sure about the cause of his suspension ... whether it is because of all or 1 of the points mentioned above, since he had not received any notice from eBay. Naturally everyone was trying to guess what was going on. Had Charlie gotten too many low scores, too many Items not as Described, or too many Items not received. People were wondering if it was Guardrail that took him down.

But nope. His record was squeaky clean. In fact he posted screen shots of every page in his dashboard. I think the people on the PSB (PowerSeller Board) would have been happier if it had been Guardrail, because at least this is a (somewhat) known quantity. The idea that a couple of fake VeRO's could take him down after 14 years of selling, just did not compute for most PowerSellers, and they truly believed they'd wake up on Monday and find out the eBay had just made a big mistake.

By Monday morning there were approximately 850 posts to the Thread on the PSB. Charlie received the response to his appeal Mon. afternoon, and it was denied. The body of the response has been posted on the Seller Protection Board as well as the screen shots of Charlie's dashboard.

(Link)

(If they are not there by the time you receive this letter, I can arrange to have the screen shots sent to you.)

But the main point of the denied appeal was:
In reviewing your account, we've found that the appropriate action was taken when making the decision to suspend your eBay activities and we will not be overturning the suspension.
In reviewing your account, we've noted the following concerns:
Removals due to Vero Listing
removals for concerns of authenticity

These concerns cause negative buying experiences and are unfair to other sellers who are following our policies and providing great customer service.

The effect of this announcement was devastating to the PS community. The main comment being made is something like, "I need to back down on my involvement on eBay and spend more time developing sales channels elsewhere." And I can tell you that it is also being said in Facebook Groups and private eBay Groups too. Charlie is known everywhere.

Now there is a movement on the PSB to "help save Charlie." (It won't go anywhere, I feel certain. But it is well intended.)

Meanwhile out on Seller Central other big sellers continue to report that they have been suspended for what appears to be minor causes too.

Just another day on eBay.
Submitted by EcommerceBytes reader

Comments (135) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: Christie This user has validated their user name.

Mon Dec 2 04:50:10 2013

So sad to hear of one of the 'Foundation Members' of ebay being treated this way, it almost sounds like an Execution rather than a purge.

I have come to the conclusion that all the 'New Sellers' being encouraged to Sell on ebay is purely an indoctrination process to 'condition' them to become Buyers [they will be pampered until they are no longer required mark my words].

I believe the BIG PICTURE ebay has 'planned' is ultimately to only eventually support sellers from CHINA [Verisign is owned by the chinese & they own a percentage of ebay] or HUGE companies. But they also NEED a BUYER BASE, so they boot off established sellers that have begun to question the ebay ethic & number of hoops required to sell, & canvas for new, small sellers who will ultimately end up spending their pitiful ebay earnings BACK ON EBAY.

I don't think one has to be a Rocket Scientist to see through the smoke screens.  They will keep a few token 'small sellers' who sing their praises, but most of the new recruits will realise what hard work it is being FOUND on there & give up attempting to sell, BUT will still make PURCHASES on ebay because 'they now know the place & feel comfortable with the process'.  

It is very sad to conclude that a small time business, as ebay once was, started in 'Good Faith' by so many willing to take a risk & support them, is now rearing its TRUE face, corporate greed at its ugliest !! Yep, just kick all those who 'BUILT' the site out on their ears & keep 'Patting' those chinese sellers on the back, irrespective of how many dodgy sales feedback they receive [I can't believe some of numbers of neg's & neutrals these sellers have & are STILL selling with immunity !!!!]

Most people I know would NEVER purchase on ebay again, they have watched them show their disloyalty to those who BUILT them & DO NOT LIKE the behaviour this company has FLAUNTED !!

Charlie, pack up your bat & ball & start your own web site, you will find it a LOT more fun & a LOT LESS stressful ! Best of Luck to you !

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: Christie This user has validated their user name.

Mon Dec 2 05:04:32 2013

A last comment

FAKE, REPORT, Item Not As Described, HOW EASY is it for any one's COMPETITOR to push one of these buttons or make a purchase & CLAIM 'Item Not as Described' to get their COMPETITOR kicked off ebay.........ebay you have SET IT ALL UP to be this way for this reason !

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: NaruMessenger
Web Site

Mon Dec 2 09:36:31 2013

Thought it should be mentioned that the forum link in this article is requiring anyone clicking it to log in to their eBay account. It's possible eBay and Lithium are phishing for referrer links and cookies.

I wrote a post about how to properly cleanse your system with an informative screen video how to fine tune the process: http://www.narumessenger.com/3401/12/how-to-clean-your-system-before-l
ogging-into-ebay/

Personally
it's none of any websites business what other websites i frequent. It's important to keep your system clean at all times!

Happy Holidays Everyone :)  

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: Eric Saeger This user has validated their user name.

Mon Dec 2 12:18:26 2013

Have you noticed that in general, eBay is getting a bad reputation?  I keep running into people who say stuff like search doesn't find anything they're looking for, either that or it's not worth selling on there anymore because of the fees.
Stuff like this is going to kill eBay.  I don't know why anyone wouldn't be heavily moving their stock onto Amazon or Etsy or whatever.
Good old Donahoe the Bain flunky.  Those idiots won't be satisfied until every last penny is in the hands of the 10 rich jerks who own this dump of a country.  

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: RJ This user has validated their user name.

Mon Dec 2 19:59:06 2013

Hi everyone!

I'm new here, but I've been buying on eBay for a while in preparation for a possible business beginning.

My point here is that I wonder if anyone else sees the implication here.

By everyone pulling together (seller's union?) You were all able to help convince eBay to reverse a decision-apparently that would have never happened before.

What if all seller's large and small put their powers together?

Hmmm, I wonder.

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: Digmen1 This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Tue Dec 3 13:20:20 2013

Surely its time for most small and medium sellers to stop listing on ebay and set up their own sites or join a site that actually wants them like bonanza or ebid.net.

The sooner sellers turn ebay into a big box portal the better.

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Tue Dec 3 15:42:32 2013

Forming a sellers union is a marvelous idea in theory, but in reality would be more frustrating than herding cats.

The ONLY viable solution is a sustained, long term FTC complaint offensive.

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: gramophone-georg This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 4 01:55:05 2013

@Ming

Agreed. Either that, or just stop using the site AND the payment "service".

Asking a big corporation to play nice is like asking a leopard seal to stop devouring penguins.

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: baconsdozen
Web Site

Mon Dec 9 10:56:19 2013

Best thing to do is forget all these middlemen and start getting your own online prescence.
Your loyalty isn't valued by ebay.

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: pman This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 29 17:03:32 2014

This is an old thread but would like to make a few points, don't know if they were made before.

It is very possible the "message board" was not getting the entire story, just one side of it, for instance, if the vendor had a subpoena issued for stolen property he would not even know about the investigation, he also would not tell the board about any of his unscrupulous listings either

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: EV4455 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Nov 15 19:04:23 2014

eBay dose it because they BENEFIT from it.
eBay needs to be investigated, they NEVER close suspended accounts, even years later, they always keep them open, acting like they have millions of users, but they don't, who knows how many accounts are just open, suspended and acting like open ones. That is a great way to keep their stuck up.  They know very well that many suspended accounts go back and open instead of just 1, 2 or 3 more.  
That is how eBay always says we have millions of users and they still multiplying.
One more benefit of suspending great sellers with great accounts, they get rid of free listings, and discounts they provided for us.  Now with new accounts, they can AGAIN charge the listing fees with no discounts. Fast way to earn lots of money. Very smart way of abusing people.
Shame on eBay.
Happy for those 2 accounts, but what about thousands of others, including me.

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: booklover27 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 28 08:39:27 2015

LOL...the purging of Ebay sellers is unparalleled in American History.  I originally thought the un-American sentiment was coming from managers in the Phillipines or India or some other nation which Ebay uses for most of its workforce but it wasn't it was decided in the good 'ol USA from the San Jose corporate offices where these incredibly psychotic rules are being created and implemented (as per my conversation with an American Ebay Rep.  The sick bastards have purged 54,000 American sellers most of who are people that need the money because we are getting poorer and poorer and have supported Ebay for years in-spite of the abuse.  I can only think of the title from an old horror movie to justify their behavior: ''Die Monster Die''.  This monopoly needs to come down...

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: booklover27 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 28 08:46:33 2015

Contact the FTC and open a complaint...I did.  Here is the link:

https://www.ftc.gov/faq/competition/report-antitrust-viol
ation

Stop
the monopolies.  My next move will be to spend my own money and start picketing this piece of crap company in San Jose and all their anti-American employees...It's time to smash this company to smithereens.  Support the smaller venues which maybe more work and less profit but at least your not getting trashed...

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: eBay Coach This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Sat Jun 27 15:27:36 2015

Hello, Thanks for allowing me to be a part of your eBay blog community. I just wanted to share this great site that i'm selling on, they treat their sellers way better than ebay.  how to sell on ebay¬†  

Perminate Link for eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller   eBay Stuns Community by Purging Well Known Power Seller

by: elvey This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Wed Jan 30 12:56:22 2019

Suggestion: Update the story with a working link to the former content of
the link you provided (i.e. the screen shots you mentioned) -
https://community.ebay.com/t5/Moderated-Content/Here-s-some-seller
-protection-for-ya/m-p/18437915
-
Archive.is and Archive.org don't have a copy.
(It's certainly legal to host them online.  Copyright law definitely allows such fair use for commentary and criticism.  I'm happy to do so; email 'em to me if your more comfortable with that.)

Click to view more comments
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 


Login is required to post comments.
To sign in to leave a comment, fill in the form below. If you have not yet signed up for AB Verify, or if you'd like more information, go to the Registration Page
.

Login for AB Verify
Be sure and use your email address and password to log in.

 
Email:
Password:
 
 Forgot Your Password?
 Even though you are signed in with the AuctionBytes Blog, you will have to sign in to the EcommerceBytes blog. But you can sign in with your existing AB Verify info.